Here are some reflections from week 3 from our Nth Dimensions Summer Interns.
1. Art and Crafts for the Kids
This week has been great just like the previous weeks. In terms of new things, I went to Grand Rounds for the first time on Thursday. It took place at George Washington University and included residents from GW and Howard. There were three cases to view, and I tried my best to describe the lesions in dermatological terms. Afterwards, there was a lecture to go over the pathology causing each of the lesions from the cases. Residents were asked to describe each of the lesions, and I was pleased to see that my descriptions weren’t too far off. Then, there was a lecture on different types of Lupus.
Additionally, I attended two lunches with the pharmaceutical representatives and I learned a lot about some new biologics with rheumatological/dermatological benefits. I also assisted the MA’s at Dr. Kindreds office and learned how to use their electronic record system.
I have also been working with my PI, Dr. Byrd on a few different projects. Right now, most of the projects are centered around a disease called hidradenitis suppurativa. We are also looking at willingness of African Americans to participate in dermatological trials.
This morning, I volunteered at a health fair hosted by the African American Community Roundtable of Howard County. Dr. Kindred serves as the chair and she helped to coordinate all of the logistics of the health fair. I helped with setup, raffle ticket handouts, patient education, and arts and crafts for the kids. Overall, the event was a success!
2. Is that a pigs foot?
Hi Nth Fam! Hope your weekend is going well. This week, I spent two days with Dr. Jagodzinski and Dr. Pandya in the OR since Dr. Sabatini had to attend conferences. Dr. Jagodzinski performed a derotational tibial osteotomy where he cut the tibia with a saw, realigned the two pieces of tibia and connected them with a plate. This is the coolest surgery that I have seen so far. It’s crazy to see what orthopaedic surgeons can do to correct deformities or put broken bones together. Seeing these surgeries definitely amplified my interest in orthopaedic surgery. I also saw my first knee arthroscopy with Dr. J and it was hard for me to make sense of what was going on. I plan to watch some videos on knee scope surgeries. Dr. Dalton, an emergency medicine fellow rotating in ortho, took me to practice suturing with the new peds residents. During the Thursday conference, I was able to point out a fracture remodeling that the residents missed on a X-ray. As for research, Dr. Sabatini taught me how to measure baumann’s angle for data collection which was cool. We just got the patient list on Thursday, so I need to work really hard in the next couple of weeks to collect data. Dr. Sabatini really stressed the importance of reading articles and I like the fact that whenever a patient asks her a question, she could cite some study to support and explain if an intervention is necessary or not or what the outcome will be. I need to make extra time to catch up on reading. We also welcomed an undergraduate student who I will be mentoring this summer and we will be collaborating on a research project involving femoral shaft fractures.
3. Stiches on a Banana?
Hey everyone! It’s always good to read and see all the amazing things y’all are doing.
This week, I learned about the many support groups available to patients who have experienced trauma. Also learned how to throw sutures so looking forward to helping close a case in the future. In the OR I helped with a pediatric pelvic ring fracture fixation. This type of injury isn’t too common so it was an interesting and sobering learning opportunity. We also fixed two poly traumas patients that both had distal radius and femur fractures. Although their injuries were similar, Dr Pilson fixed them differently which I was curious about. Really enjoying learning the art behind preoperative decision making based on factors that are unique to each patient and injury.
I was able to spend more time with Niobra this week. She is a previous Nth intern and current 3rd year at Wake. She has been super supportive and today, she helped us deliver our presentation on Osteoporosis at the Juneteenth Festival and Health Fair. It’s so nice to see our Nth Family in action, lifting as they climb
I attended Resident Research day where the current and outgoing residents present their research. I learned a lot from their individual presentation styles as well as from the critiques the faculty gave them. I also tinkered with a virtual reality OR training software program. It is a great supplemental learning tool that helps residents build muscle memory for procedural techniques used in the OR.
Got to experience downtown Winston Salem with LaTarsha today and the city definitely has more to offer than it lets on. Still very excited and grateful to be here living out this opportunity. ❤️
4. Research and “White Coat Coaching”
This week shifted me from pediatric orthopedics to a new preceptor Dr. Ellison who is a joints orthopedic surgeon. Shadowed him in clinic at yet another new location in Concord, a bit north of Charlotte. It was great to meet him and talk with him throughout the clinic day especially because he is really down to earth and he was open about giving life advice and naturally interested in who I am, where I went to school. He is also very enthusiastic about exposing me to orthopedics which is a special vibe to be around. I was only with him Monday as he had some administrative things and traveled out of town the rest of the week. I am scheduled for a full two weeks with him at new OrthoCarolina locations and I’m looking forward to it! Its a good 45mins - hour commute each day, I’m ready!
The week gave me time to focus on my research project. I am doing a retrospective review of major complications following distal triceps tendon ruptures. It was a challenge to get started for two reasons. One: the main resident who helped me learn about the project and the clinical aspects was very busy these past couple weeks (which I totally understand now being around them!!). It was hard to nail down a time to meet since my first try the surgery case I was in went long and the second time his went very long! Eventually we did meet and he helped me get started.
Second: I was restricted on when I could work on the project as I needed to show up to the hand clinic and use other people’s access to chart review. Because I was using their access I needed to sit right next to them in a tiny office and although I wanted to work more, I had to start when they were available and end when they had to leave. Now I have been given my own access to patient charts, which is a big step in allowing me to work through this project independently!
Attended grand rounds again this week and again residents were presenting. Made me have to imagine myself doing that in 5ish years!!
The last thing I’ll say is since I’ve been driving ALOT I started listening to podcast to be productive during the commute. I listed to an episode of White Coat Coaching orthopedics which had Dr. Mason as a guest and it was awesome! Again felt grateful and driven to take advantage of the opportunity to be an Nth Dimensions Scholar!
5. I Define Personalized Care by…
Here's a sum up of my week:
Monday, I was in the MSK reading room and met a Vandy M2 student who wants to be an orthopedic surgeon. She was telling me how her curriculum allows them to rotate through the hospital before taking STEP 1. I’ve talked to other students and they’ve said that being in the hospital helps them solidify concepts. Therefore, I’m trying to get exposed to as much as I can.
Tuesday, I attended VUMC’s annual StrategyShare. This year’s theme was “Design for Patients and Families”. Healthcare workers from all different areas presented their ideas on how to improve patient-centered care. This has inspired me to want to hold an event like this at my school. In which, people from all different backgrounds (especially engineering and medicine) can come together and share ideas on how to make healthcare more effective and patient-centered.
I spent Wednesday morning in the neuroradiology reading room. I was allowed to watch how a myelography is performed. This technique is done to get a better image of the spinal cord. Dr. Davis, the neuroradiologist I was following, explained the whole procedure to me, as his resident was doing the myelogram. Something I found interesting was that once the contrast fluid is injected into the spinal cord (L4 I think), the patient is tilted head down to make sure the contrast fluid goes all throughout the spine.
Wednesday afternoon, I met with Dr. Savoie, who is interested in helping me start a mission trip to Colombia. He has experience in Guatemala but he is down to help in Colombia too! Dr. Savoie is an MD JD. I have a lot to learn from him.
Wednesday evening, I gave a talk to high school students about my journey through medicine. During high school I took part in a summer program called NSLC. The program is having sessions on campus so I decided to reach out to the coordinators coming back and sharing my experience. I was able to connect with a lot of teens. I made sure to wear my Nth dimensions polo.
Thursday and Friday, I attended the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science Research Retreat. My research mentor, Dr. Rachelle Crescenzi, helped set it up. I learned a lot about how researchers think. I reviewed some biochem and lab prep.
One of the projects I found most interesting was how skin melanin affects images taken by fNIRS.(main researcher, Sharae Cockrill pictured below) A lot of people think that radiology is void of discrimination because the patient’s face is never seen. However, work like this shows how there is more to imaging than what meets the eye.
On Thursday, I was also introduced to the idea of making healthcare more effective (through an engineering mindset). So, I’ve been trying figure out a way on how to apply this into my life. Hopefully, the event that I want to do at my school will help with that.
Friday, during the lunch break, I met an engineer from Philips, the electronic company. I proposed to him my mission trip idea. He gave me a lot of great feedback. By the end of the conversation, he was offering to help me with supplies!
As you can see, I have been able to gain so much from every encounter because... I believe in myself! I will keep saying this, thank you Nth dimensions for “activating” me.
Update on my goals:
STEP 1: Today I finalized a plan for hard core studying that works with my schedule. I will be getting UWorld in July, so I’ll incorporate it into my plan. I have reached out to some classmates about starting a study group when we come back. We’re looking for others who are as committed. #gunners